In all likelihood there is no saving Dortmund’s 2017-18 campaign in the UEFA Champions League. BVB’s only chance is for APOEL to beat Real Madrid, and then for Dortmund to do the same when they head to the Bernabeu in a couple weeks.
Judging by the way things have been going lately for Peter Bosz’s side, it’s safe to say that it isn’t happening.
The more immediate concern for Bosz is saving his job. If Dortmund don’t improve their form soon, then he’ll soon be unemployed. Even if a win won’t really do much for their Champions League hopes, it could be a catalyst to change the squad’s recent fortunes.
BVB will also be out looking for revenge for their defeat to Tottenham on Matchday 1. Dortmund dominated possession in that 3-1 loss, but were victimized repeatedly on the counter-attack by a clinical Spurs team.
Tottenham may be a little vulnerable heading into this one. They suffered a disappointing 2-0 loss to rivals Arsenal on Saturday, and will also be without an important defender as Toby Alderweireld continues to recover from a hamstring injury.
But Dortmund have injuries of their own. Christian Pulisic didn’t train on Monday due to a muscular injury, and it’s unlikely that he’ll be available to play against North London’s original club. And to make things worse, Sokratis will also miss the match after he was subbed-off this weekend against Stuttgart with a rib injury.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang should be back in the fold after missing the defeat at Stuttgart due to “disciplinary reasons.” Dortmund and Bosz desperately need their star striker back in the right mindset and back scoring goals.
With the group pretty much decided, Dortmund and APOEL are fighting for the 3rd spot and an entry into the knockout stages of the Europa League. They two clubs are tied on points right now, but BVB have the advantage on goal difference.
The Black and Yellows had the goal of playing European football in the new year, just not this kind of European football. But to be honest, the Europa League will probably be more appropriate for Dortmund’s current level of play.